As readers of our blog know, the new immigration bill has met several road blocks that have prevented it from moving faster through the Senate. Currently, there are rising concerns among conservatives over whether giving citizenship to the millions of undocumented immigrants already in the United States is a good idea or not. As some conservatives point out, this influx of low-skilled workers will flood the market, possibly raising unemployment to unimagionable levels.
Despite his previous concerns with the immigration bill when it was first being drafted, Florida Rep. Marco Rubio has recently offered his full endorsement for the new legislation that could soon offer the undocumented immigrants in the U.S. a pathway to citizenship.
There has been a huge push in the last few decades towards improving working conditions and making them safer for workers. With newer health codes and even new laws that protect whistleblowers, it would seem that at this day in age, few employees should ever fear losing their job if they report unsafe working conditions.
With most of the nation's attention firmly focused on the current gay-rights cases facing the U.S. Supreme Court this month, few attention is being paid to an equally important matter that could affect millions of immigrants in the United States. We're talking of course about immigration laws; and with the Obama Administration continuing to press forward on the matter, immigration reform could occur within a few months.
A bill to provide a new pathway to citizenship for foreign nations was introduced in the U.S. Senate in late January. The measure, known as the Startup Visa Act, has previously been introduced-but like many immigration reform measures, the Startup Visa Act did not fare well on a couple of prior trips in the Senate in Washington. D.C. However, with new interest in the issue of comprehensive immigration reform, ideas are making their way back into the public debate on Capitol Hill.
Newspaper accounts and the blogosphere are rife with commentary on bipartisan proposals for immigration reform that are being considered on Capitol Hill. The commentary seems to change hourly, although the legislative process is likely to take some time as the proposals are debated and marked up in coming weeks.
Immigration reform has been bandied around for some time. Last year saw various battles in the courts over state laws on immigration. The Obama administration has made policy changes in immigration enforcement, as this blog has discussed.
In late December, this blog reported that federal immigration officials had audited more than 3,000 companies for I-9 compliance in enforcing business immigration laws. Those I-9 compliance audits were part of a policy change in recent years in how the government generally conducts workplace immigration enforcement, according to a report issued Monday by a non-partisan Washington think tank, the Migration Policy Institute.
Immigration reform has been a hot topic in the media this year. Immigration policy issues have also grabbed headlines, as stories have arisen over the Deferred Action program for young immigrants and the federal immigration policy in deportation and removal proceedings known as prosecutorial discretion.
The first post-election bill addressing potential immigration reform has been stalled in the United States Senate. The measure started in the House and was aimed at allowing immigrants with science and tech degrees taken from American universities to seek a visa to remain in the country after graduation. However, the House bill did not seek to increase overall visas under immigration law.